Fall Practice Report #2
“We’ve improved a great deal (this morning). In the afternoon, we’ll wait and see how that one goes,” said Hatcher in reference to the morning session which consisted of mainly newcomers. “Just as far as knowing where to go at certain points of practice, knowing how to practice a little bit better... the little things got a lot cleaner this morning.”
During the afternoon skeleton drill, defensive backs Carson Hill (Milledgeville/Baldwin County) and Chris Covington (Lawrenceville/Brookwood), both preseason First Team All-Southern Conference selections, nearly came up with an interception while breaking up a pass attempt.
In the 11-on-11 segment seniors Casey Wingard (Acworth/Etowah) and Quentin Taylor (
“It looked like the defense was flying around out there today, just like they did at the end of spring practice,” said Hatcher.
Sunday will mark the final day of the split squad, practicing from 12-2 and 3:25-5:15 p.m. On Sunday and Monday (9:15-11:45 a.m.) the team will work out in shoulder pads, then Tuesday (9:15-11:45 a.m.) is the first scheduled practice in full pads.
VETERAN DEFENSE RETURNS: Last year defensive coordinator Ashley Anders inherited a defensive unit that returned six starters and featured two former offensive players. Despite dealing with season-ending injuries to key players, the defense improved throughout the 2007 season. In fact, over the final four games the defense allowed just 14 points in the fourth quarter.
Chris Covington one of those former offensive players moved to defense - not only earned First Team All-Southern Conference accolades by the Sports Media Association, he also was named Honorable Mention All-America by The Sports Network. Larry Beard (Fairburn/Sandy Creek) also earned First Team All-SoCon honors and Damon Suggs was a Second Team pick.
Carson Hill (one of the key players from last year that missed action due to an injury)
“After day one the biggest thing I saw, it’s the first day and everybody is excited and fired up to be here. One thing coach Hatcher stresses to the guys is to have fun, and when I saw the guys it was basically like recess,” said Anders. “The guys came out like they were little kids again. They got to be on the grass and actually have fun.”
The Eagles’ second-year defensive coordinator is trying to take full advantage of these split squad practices, which he thinks will pay dividends in the long run especially for the newcomers.
“(Having a split squad practice) You get a lot more quality work for each individual. You can spread the reps out, good quality reps, and get more than two or three reps a pop.”
Of the 17 seniors in fall camp, nine are on defense. Anders has one simple goal for his defensive unit during fall camp.
“To get an inch better every day. As long as we come out on the field and we make improvements from the previous day, that’s all you can ever ask out of a team.”
- Category: Football
- Published on Saturday, 02 August 2008 00:12